Setting boundaries is a challenging – but necessary – part of parenting kids of all ages. Expectations and high standards are good things to have with both our younger children and our teenagers. But when it comes to guiding teens, our approach is a little different.
Throughout the teenage years, parental control gradually becomes less and more autonomy is extended to our young people. The eventual goal is that our teens will leave home and be able to make safe and sensible decisions for themselves, so we start working towards this in a gradual way.
In terms of setting boundaries, we recommend moving into a more co-operative style of negotiation. It is honouring to our young people – they’ve got a good head on their shoulders, they understand our values by now, and their feelings matter too.